A few weeks ago I was browsing through the secondhand bookstall at our local Saturday market, where you can get everything from guitars to fresh crepes to … well, crap. It’s in the grounds of the Returned Soldiers Association clubhouse, so you have to dodge around the light artillery while searching for scones or strange knitted objects.
Anyway, my greedy eyes fell on a book with the name Catherine Jinks on the spine. Imagining it had been wrongly placed in Romance, rather then Young Adult Medieval Fiction (they don’t really have a section for that niche, but I like to organise other people’s books in my head) I almost moved it to another cardboard box. But since it was a title I hadn’t seen before, I thought about buying it.
It really was a romance. A “stirring historical romance in the tradition of …” etc.
Must be a different Catherine Jinks, I thought, to the creator of Pagan’s Crusade and the gritty streetlife of 12th century Jerusalem.
But no. The woman’s a chameleon.
And I only knew the half of it.
Here’s an interview with her from SMH, which quantifies her work as “30 books that range across young adult, children’s and adult genres. She writes historical, horror, chick lit, mystery and science fiction; her latest manuscript is a story about computer-generated porn.”
(Nice to see she got a whopper of an advance on her new book in the US.)
Mind you, I didn’t buy the romance. Don’t care who wrote it.
However, just got back from a dash across the Tasman where I picked up Inga Clendinnan’s Quarterly essay on historians versus novelists. Shall report later when I’ve finished it, as I’ve also now read The Secret River (apart from anything else, what on earth was all the fuss about?).

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